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Baby Feeding

Now, when you are a mother of an adorable newborn baby, you must know about various aspects of baby care. Topping the list is "feeding your baby". It is possible that you might feel worried how you will feed your newborn. It is quite normal for a new mother to have doubts about her ability to nurse.

So to remove all those doubts and to do away with all the inhibitions about breast feeding your child , here comes an article that is surely going to help you out, making this experience a happy session for both of you-- you as well as your baby. First and foremost what is worth discussing is the point that is Bottle feeding and Breast feeding same in terms of nutrition provided??

The answer to this question is a big NO. The above mentioned two practices are totally different in terms of nutrition provided. It is Breast milk that acts as the optimum and ideal food for a child. One cannot equate it with Processed Infant formula or bottle milk.

Breast milk is precisely and uniquely designed God gift that acts as complete nutritional food for the overall development of a growing baby. It acts as a protection for the baby against all the infections and illness for the complete first year and as long as nursing continues.

We are not denying the fact that the Processed Infant formulas do have a lot of nutrients required by a child for his overall growth. Scientists are also challenging that now these formulas contain almost all the nutrients present in mother's milk. But the fact is that artificial infant milks , no matter if based on cows milk or soybeans can never compete with nature's product. Mother's milk is rich in proteins that help in the development of the child's brain. Babies who are fed on artificial formulas are more prone to illness and diseases, in comparison to babies who get proper amount of mother's milk.

Apart from low levels of nutritional value, following are the consequences of feeding a child with bottle :

Bottle feeding leads to overfeeding and obesity , and this may continue till chidhood , adolescence and even adulthood.

Keeping a child completely on feeding by bottle can lead to tooth decay in later years. it can also result in destructuring of teeth in some cases. This can come in form of malocclusion (improper meeting of upper and lower jaw).

Bottle feeding for a long time results in deformity of facial muscles due to excessive sucking.

FIRST FEED

A new born baby is all set for his first feed , immediately after the birth. If a mother is unable to feed him immediately after the birth, the baby is usually alert, eager to suck and moreover hungry throughout the first two hours after birth. This precisely the time ripe enough to give him his first feed.

It is natural while feeding your baby for the first time that, the mother has nothing but a yellow colored fluid resembling blood more than milk. Do not get worried if you something like this. This fluid is known as Colostrum. Colostrum is present in the breast in very small amount but enough for the baby to have a stomach fill.

This liquid is extremely important for a new born baby. It contains protective white blood cells , which are extremely essential for the baby's body to attack harmful bacteria. Colostrum strengthens the inside of the baby's intestines, in order to prevent the entry of bacteria. It plays dual function in the baby's body. First being a protective agent against all kinds of diseases and second of acting as a complete and ideal food for new born's first few days.

Another thing that adds importance to the first feed Colostrum is the fact that frequent doses of the fluid helps to push out a substance called bilirubin from body,

in form of black stool called meconium. Bilirubin is responsible for causing Jaundice in children, this way mother's milk helps to lessen the chances of Jaundice among babies.

An important thing to note in regard of first feed is that if it is delayed more than first two hours of birth, it is possible that baby might become reluctant to take breast there after. A quick feed also adds to the confidence level of the mother. it also acts as catalyst for the hormones that control the movements of uterus to keep it firm after delivery.

Positioning the baby while breast feeding

The correct position to position a baby to feed him is one when his gums are just above the areola, around the nipples. This position is ideal as in this position the baby wil be able to press the sinuses, that are present beneath the areola to bring out milk.

"Cradle" or "Cuddle Hold"

In this position the baby is held with his head placed in the corner of the mother's arm. This is considered as the ideal and the perfect position to feed a baby. It is possible that both the mother and the baby might face some problem in getting used to the position. But practicing in the position for a few days will make things comfortable for both.

The "Cross-Over" hold

This position is ideal if you want to feed the baby while sitting. Arrange one or two pillows in your lap and then place the baby on it. The pillows should be high enough to bring the baby to the level of your breast. Hold him with your arm in a way that your hand is in between the shoulder blades and holds the back of the child's neck and head. Use your hand to bring the baby's face exactly in front of your breast instead of guiding your breast towards the baby. Now keep your index finger and thumb around the areola and press the breast so that the baby can take his fill.

Football hold.

This position is perfect for mother's who have had a cesarean delivery. It is also preferable in situations that need more vision of the baby to getting the hold, or if your breasts are of large size. It is a ideal position if you are feeding a premature baby who is small in size as compared to a normal baby. Last but not the least it is an ideal position if the mother has to nurse twin babies.

In this position the mother sits on a chair with a pillow to support her arm. Now hold the baby in half sitting position , with his/ her face towards the mother. With the arm that is nearest to the baby , support the baby's back , neck and head. Now bring the baby's face in the level with your breast. Now use the other hand which is free to compress the breast and make the baby open his mouth wide and take the breast in and take his/her fill.

Side-lying position.

This position becomes a good choice of feeding the baby when the mother has had a cesarean delivery or is not in a position to sit due to some other reasons. this position also comes handy when the baby is in sleep and is reluctant to take feed. Last but not the least , mothers can go on in this position during the night without loosing upon their sleep. In this position the mother and the baby lie on their sides , facing each other . Now use your fingers to lift your breast . Now bring the baby near you and guide him towards the breast and let him have his feed.

Finishing off the Feed

The best and the ideal way to end feeding your baby is to wait till the baby leaves the nipple by himself. If you find that baby is showing no signs of leaving the breast even after 20 to 25 minutes of sucking on one side, and you want to change over to the other side , then you can do this by first breaking off the suction. It is noted that Even if the baby is not sucking, still he has a tight hold on the breast. To remove the baby from the breast either pull down his chin or put your finger into the nook of his mouth.

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